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After years of shower domination, the bathtub is making a major comeback. Whether you’re adding a bathtub back into your bathroom or replacing an old bathtub, there are several factors to consider when choosing a bathtub for your bathroom redo.
Available Space – The first factor in choosing a bathtub is to get an accurate measure of how much space you have available in your bathroom for a bathtub. The amount of available space impacts what size and style of bathtub you can consider for your bathroom. Choose the wrong size and you’ll have a very expensive change out on your hands.
Style – Next, you’ll want to consider what style of bathtub you want. The style options available to you can be limited based on the amount of available space you have. The major styles are divided into two categories: freestanding or recessed bathtubs. Freestanding bathtubs are not attached to a wall and are most suitable for bathrooms that are more spacious. Styles of freestanding bathtubs include clawfoot, angled, oval and rectangular. Recessed bathtubs are typically surrounded by walls on three sides (corner-style tubs being the exception) and are the most common ones you see in apartments, condos and small bathrooms. Recessed bathtub styles include undermount/drop-in, corner-style, walk-in and soaking tubs such as Japanese tubs or garden tubs.
Material – Once you’ve got the measurements of the space available and have chosen a bathtub that fits the bathroom and your style preferences, you’ll need to decide what type of material you’d like for your tub. Depending on the style and size of the bathtub that will work for your bathroom, your choices for materials might be limited. In general, there are a number of materials bathtubs are made from, including fiberglass, acrylic, porcelain, ceramic, stone resin, processed stone, marble, cast iron, steel and copper.
Budget – When making the decision on materials, you’ll need to keep your budget in mind. A freestanding tub ranges from around $600 to $3,000 depending on the material and style. A recessed tub ranges from around $400 to about $1,200 depending on material and style. (Note: These estimated prices do not include installation, which can vary greatly by area and provider.) The more affordable materials are fiberglass, acrylic and porcelain. The most expensive materials are cast iron, steel and copper is generally most expensive. The other materials fall in the middle, pricewise. You’ll want to make sure you have enough in your budget to choose the material you want for your tub or explore what materials will work for you in the budget you have available.
Who knew there could be so many factors to consider when choosing a humble bathtub? Keeping these four factors in mind and choosing carefully will get you a great new tub you can enjoy for years to come.